WAN-IFRA

Shaping the Future of the Newspaper

Date

Sat - 23.08.2014


paywall

The New York Times Company’s share price experienced its furthest one-day drop in three years today after the company released third quarter results that showed an 85 percent decline in net income on the period a year earlier.

While analysts had predicted an average third quarter profit of 8 cents a share, the company reported a loss from continuing operations (excluding severance and other costs) of 1 cent a share.

During the quarterly earnings call today, Twitter users noted under the $NYT symbol that the company’s share price had fallen by 11, 13, and then 17 percent. (The decline stood at 14.6 percent at time of publication. View current price here).

On the call, Chairman and Interim CEO Arthur Sulzberger Jr. listed video, mobile and international expansion among growth areas for the company, and spoke of its engagement with Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Google +, its new presence on Flipboard, and its experimental HTML 5 app for the iPad as crucial elements in its strategy.

Author

Emma Knight's picture

Emma Knight

Date

2012-10-25 18:54

Are things looking good for The New York Times?

Peter Kafka writes for All Things D that, according to Barclays analyst Kannan Venkateshwar, the Times’ circulation growth may start balancing out its advertising losses by the middle of 2014.

Venkateshwar’s prediction suggests that the Times’ paywall, which boasts 450,000 subscribers, is starting to pay off. More than that, it may be seen as a vindication of the Times’ digital strategy, which drew criticism after the paper posted a year-on-year decline in digital advertising revenue last month.

When the drop was announced, paidContent noted that, even though Times’ subscription revenue increased by 9.7% from the previous year, the results were “worrisome for a news industry staking its future on digital revenue.”

Author

Hannah Vinter's picture

Hannah Vinter

Date

2012-05-15 17:42

After launching less than a year and a half ago, paid digital content service Ongo is shutting down. The company, which aggregates news from around 40 publishers, presents it in a user-friendly, add-free format, and charges readers a subscription for it, will shut shop by the end of this month, reported Nieman Lab yesterday.

Ongo’s closure represents a bad bet made by some of the traditional news industry’s biggest players: The New York Times, Gannett and The Washington Post each contributed $4m to the company when it was launched.

Author

Hannah Vinter's picture

Hannah Vinter

Date

2012-05-09 15:11

Not all paywalls are created equal: RR Donnelly’s Press+ announced yesterday that it would extend a grandfather clause to Google One Pass subscribers after Google closed its paid content platform on Friday, according to a press release.

Press+, a metered paywall platform which launched in 2009, currently has over 300 publications on its service, including newspapers from McClatchy and Tribune Co., as we previously reported. With the Press+ model, publishers allow users on average access to 5-15 articles per month, after which users must subscribe in order to view content. 

“We will maintain subscriber accounts for whichever publishers might have signed on with Google without charging our usual revenue share,” said Press+ cofounder Steven Brill in the press release. “We’ll only charge for all the new customers we generate going forward once our seamless transition is completed.”

Author

Gianna Walton's picture

Gianna Walton

Date

2012-04-24 12:43

As Metro International, with 17 million readers of its free daily around the world, extends its “Metro Moment” to more digital platforms, Maggie Samways makes one promise: “There will be no paywall in Metro’s future. Scout’s honour.”

Samways, Executive Vice President and Global Editor-in-Chief of Metro International in the UK, presented the company’s digital strategy which is more about “extending the Metro Moment than defending it,” she says.

That Metro Moment occurs every morning as readers commute to work between 7 and 9 a.m. For most, that has meant reading Metro’s print edition. But today that is being challenged by the onslaught of other platforms.

“The most important thing for us is to be true to our DNA and that is the Metro Moment. To continue to define what that means to us and our readers and especially what that means to them on mobile, tablets, and web.”

In essence, Samways says Metro wants to build new distribution channels, gain unique access to online audiences and thus create new Metro Moments. “We will use the print product to build awareness of our new products, continue to target people on the move and create some of those ‘lean back’ moments with Metro using verticals that are relevant to readers.”

For more on this story, please see our Digital Media Europe blog.

Author

Dean Roper's picture

Dean Roper

Date

2012-04-18 11:23

“I am bored sick of talking about paywalls,” said Tom Whitwell, editorial director of Times Digital. “Instead of debating payment models we need to learn how to build digital products that people are willing to pay for,” he continued.

The Times launched a controversial paid online strategy in summer 2010, which gives no access to non-subscribers. “Every commentator told us we were wrong,” said Whitwell, but he believes it is necessary to be “fearless,” and now the paper has 130,000 paying digital subscribers.

Readers were surveyed about how best to charge online and the biggest thing that came out of the discussions was the need for simplicity: a straightforward system where people knew what they were getting for their money.

Subscribers pay £2 a week for web access plus mobile, £4 a week for web, mobile and tablet, or £6 per week for all digital access plus a daily print edition.

This is working because of the quality of the paper’s journalism, said Whitwell. “The only way we can charge £4 a week to read our stuff is because of our journalism,” he stressed.

For more on this story, please see our Digital Media Europe blog

Author

Emma Goodman's picture

Emma Goodman

Date

2012-04-18 10:49

Joint paywall platform Piano Media announced today that it has acquired €2 million in growth capital from 3TS Capital Partners Technology in Central and Eastern Europe Fund, according to a press release. Piano will use the investment to expand its global development and marketing efforts, the release said.

Launched in Slovakia in May 2011 and later expanded to Slovenia in January 2012, Piano Media is an online subscription-based payment service that groups major media outlets into a national paywall, as we previously reported. Currently, 20 publishers with 60 news websites participate in the Piano Media system, according to the release.

Piano Chief Executive and Founder Tomáš Bella said in the press release, “Our €300,000 seed funding, raised in 2011, enabled us to launch in two countries and prove Piano’s model works. This deal represents the next step in Piano’s growth; helping speed our expansion, recruit top talent, ramp up our marketing, broaden our sales channels and keep improving our software.”

Author

Gianna Walton's picture

Gianna Walton

Date

2012-04-17 17:15

Is paid content worth more than newspapers are currently selling it for? Several US publishers who spoke at a Newspaper Association of America press conference seem to think so, Poynter reported.

Gannett President of US Publishing Bob Dickey said at the conference that he projects Gannett’s paid digital newspaper subscriptions will be worth $100 million in 2013, according to Poynter.

Gannett conducted marketing research that led the company to decide in favor of paywalls, which were implemented at 80 Gannett papers this year, the article said. According to Dickey’s description of the research finding, “Readers value our content at a higher price than they pay,” the article said.

Dickey also said that Gannett may need to enhance its digital content in order to sustain paid subscriptions, which could mean the hiring of additional "content creators," the article said.

Author

Gianna Walton's picture

Gianna Walton

Date

2012-04-10 13:45

To paywall or not to paywall? That seems to be the most prominent question in the sphere online news publishing these days. In the discussions on the topic, the lines appear to be clearly drawn: on the one side are newspapers such as the New York Times or the Financial Times, which charge for their online content either immediately or after accessing a certain number of articles. On the other side are papers such as the Guardian, which believe that an “open” approach, more akin to the nature of the Internet, will eventually yield solid revenue.

The drawback of this way of thinking about digital publishing is that it may put too much emphasis on the question of paywall, whereas a different angle could be more helpful. GigaOM’s Mathew Ingram makes this point in a recent article, arguing that rather than defining the relationship with their readers through money, newspapers should focus on the relationship they have with their readers. When developed more fully, this relationship would then form the basis that could be monetised.

For more on this story please see our sister publication www.editorsweblog.org

Author

Teemu Henriksson's picture

Teemu Henriksson

Date

2012-03-28 19:16

Slovakian start-up Piano Media reported a 37% revenue increase per 100,000 users and over €26,000 in revenue during its first month of operation in Slovenia, according to a press release.

Piano Media, an online common-payment subscription system, started as a successful national paywall in Slovakia and has since expanded to Slovenia, as previously reported. Nine Slovenian publishers are currently part of the Piano paywall system, including the national daily newspaper Dnevnik.

Piano Media spokesperson David Brauchli said in an email that while Slovenia only has 1.2 million internet users, compared to Slovakia’s 2.3 million, Piano’s revenue per 100,000 users in Slovenia was around €400 higher than in Slovakia.

As previously reported, subscriptions in Slovenia cost €1.99 per week, €4.89 per month, or €48.90 per year. 30% of profits go to Piano Media, 30% are given to the news sites where the user visits, and 40% are given to the site where the subscription is originally purchased.

“Piano's revenue is additional to what publishers are already earning from their sites, which were free before, so this immediate increase in revenue is already helping the beleaguered industry,” Brauchli said.

Author

Gianna Walton's picture

Gianna Walton

Date

2012-03-16 18:13

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